Howard Zinn’s statement rings true for any nation, whether it be Israel, Palestine, or the United States: “There is no flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people.”
The Institute’s Israel/Palestine expert, Phyllis Bennis, had a scathing statement out today on The Huffington Post, on the Israeli military’s “massacre” of nine-plus activists. She says:
By coincidence, I am in Istanbul at the moment. In Turkey, home to most of the dead and injured among the international activists, 10,000 people marched from the Israeli consulate to the city’s main square, while thousands more took to the streets in Ankara, expressing outrage and demanding international accountability and immediate action to end the blockade of Gaza.
Maybe someone in the Israeli intelligence services or in the military really believed that the high profile threats that the Gaza Freedom Flotilla would “not be allowed” to reach Gaza shores would somehow convince the 700+ human rights defenders to simply give up. That they would agree to turn their 10,000 tons of humanitarian aid over to the Israeli military in the hope that the IDF, which has enforced an illegal and crippling siege against the 1.5 million Gazans for more than 3 years, would abide by their claim that they would send the aid on to Gaza… a Gaza that Israel continues to assert is not facing the humanitarian catastrophe that has been documented by the United Nations, by Amnesty International, by every Israeli and Palestinian and international human rights organization working in the region.
But anyone who knew anything about the Gaza boats knew that wasn’t going to happen.
Our own Netfa Freeman overlaid interviews of people protesting Israel, protesters’ chants, speeches, and music to create an audio story of the Gaza flotilla attack. It runs about 20 minutes long, but is worth every second.
CODEPINK provides an interactive timeline of the flotilla attack in Gaza yesterday, including firsthand stories of the attack – which they describe as “nothing short of state-sponsored terrorism.” It’s not quite complete yet, but should be a great resource for information as it comes.
Al-Jazeera is also liveblogging updates on the attack’s aftermath.
Kevin Drum wonders: How will this end?
There are now planned protests at Israeli embassies worldwide, if you want to let your country’s leaders know that you’re against the Israeli government’s actions.